Become Pain Free Now

The Pain of Running – A Different Perspective

We often hear from people in our clinic that “running is hard on my joints” or “the wear & tear from the run has caught up with me.” Our response to them is markedly different from many in the community of therapeutic treatment. We do not believe that the run is the root cause of the symptoms that runners experience. A myriad of ailments seem to plague runners, from knee and hip pain, to back disorders, shin splints, plantar fasciitis, and many others. However, running is not at all bad for the body; neither does it exert a negative stimulus through the so-called “pounding” or “wear & tear.” When a car breaks down, does that mean that driving is bad for the car? Or perhaps could there be something wrong with the car? The only reason people hurt when they run is because something is usually wrong with the alignment of their bodies.

Inappropriate patterns of muscle activity are contributory to all symptoms. The kinetic response of the body works from proximal to distal, and internal to external. When a runner lacks the structural integrity to hold proper form, the peripheral and distal muscles, connective tissues (tendons and ligaments), and joints are placed on overload. Shin Splints, for example, result when the feet strike the ground improperly. This most often occurs when the hips lack proper function, thus causing the muscles of the lower leg to be forcibly overloaded in a position of torque. Just imagine, rather than the ankle complex smoothly flexing and extending during a run, the muscle sheathing of the lower leg is subjected to ferocious abuse as it twists, tears, and shears, thus producing the shin splint. The same forces apply to the knee joint if the hip doesn’t allow the knee to flex and extend properly (remember, the movement of the knee is determined by the function of the hip). Buying new shoes, using orthotics, running on a softer surface, and taking up a low-impact sport are the wrong answers. We must retrain your muscles to do their intended job, thereby holding your posture perfectly.

Our approach uses the designed “blueprint” of the human body as a guide. The goal is to bring about a state of muscular balance and internal homeostasis to the individual. The “blueprint” we speak of shows all joints of the body forming right angles with one another. The shoulders and hips are level. The knees and feet are pointed straight ahead. And the spine has its proper “S-Curve” with the head sitting directly on top of the spine and between the shoulders.

Our primary objective is equally applicable to everyone we treat. That objective is to remove the person’s structural dysfunctions and limitations. Therefore the focus of treatment is on the underlying cause of the symptom rather than the symptom itself. By accomplishing this primary objective we experience an unsurpassed success rate in the mitigation and eventual removal of symptoms. For those individuals who are asymptomatic, this therapeutic technique provides high demand strength and conditioning routines to increase athleticism, power, speed, and cardiovascular endurance, as well as prevent injury.

So, before your next training session, remember that structural integrity is an even higher priority than cardiovascular endurance. Prepare your body not only through stretching, but also strengthening, in order to change the misalignment of joint positions that would otherwise lead to trouble. This should consistently be done pre-run through a proper sequence of exercises that will allow the body to function more efficiently and pain free. By stripping away postural dysfunctions and deviations, your next run just may be the fastest and most comfortable yet.

Let us know if we can be of help in improving your performance as well as your quality of life.

In Motion O.C.